Creating a sustainable business is never easy, here are a few helpful guidelines
You may have the perfect business idea, and a plan for the first stage of your journey. But what about sustaining that success? What are the best ways to build stability and ensure the longevity of your business?
You need to develop, grow and nurture relationships within your industry, and ideally in neighbouring sectors. It’s not enough to create online social media accounts and hope that connections are made. It’s important to have a content plan and a structured social media project on the go at all times.
Networking offline is still important, although it can seem that the internet has taken over. Attend industry events, get to know your competitors, peers and customers. Arrange to speak at a networking event if you can. All of these steps will improve your status and, in turn, the reputation of your business.
Protect your website
Online attacks can devastate a fledgling business, so make sure you get expect advice on the best way to protect your online data. While you may feel it’s a hit to your budget when you’re just starting out, these days it’s a necessary step.
Take working holidays for a while
It might sound a bit depressing, but it’s a fact that when you start-up a new business, you can’t take your eye off the ball. This means it’s difficult to realistically take time off to go on holiday.
However, a work/life balance is important too. Burning out before you’ve been in business for a year won’t do your company any good – or yourself! Find ways to make a working vacation work for you. In today’s world of internet connectivity, it’s possible to combine the two so you can get away while not taking your finger off your business pulse.
Know when to outsource
Most people take on lots of roles when they start a business, but there will come a time when this is no longer possible. Knowing when to make the move and outsource parts of your work is a key step in your business journey, and can be the difference between short term success and long-term stability.
Either hire employees or outsource tasks as you grow. It can be difficult to relinquish some control, particularly when you are working on your own idea, but it is the only way to achieve sustainability in the future.
Be the right kind of leader
Strong leadership is undoubtedly important for a successful business. But this is something that needs to be learned. No one is the perfect leader out of the box, and the best leaders are flexible, communicative and always willing to learn.
Adapting your leadership style as you grow is vital to learning the most effective leadership styles for the future success of your business.
Know when to expand
If you started your business from home, you will find that you will come against barriers for future growth. At some point it will be necessary to take your business out of the home and into an office.
While this entails expenditure and a bit of courage, it’s generally crucial to allowing your business to grow to its potential.
Create a workable marketing strategy
This should include content marketing, blogging and social media. These aspects can’t be ignored if you want your business to make an impact. In an increasingly competitive online world, this can seem daunting, but by planning carefully it can work.
Treat your content marketing plan in a similar way to your overarching business plan, and factor in the time it will take. Content marketing isn’t a one size fits all strategy – you need to create a plan from scratch and then make sure you follow it.
It can be easy to get carried away when you’re starting out, particularly if you have initial success with your product or service. Keeping your feet on the ground and thinking half a year ahead at all times will help you maintain this success.
You don’t want to be a flash in the pan – you’re here to stay!
– Freddie Achom